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You don’t have to give money or gifts to give something back to your community.
There are loads of ways to do something positive for the city or where you live and all you need to offer is your time.
It takes a little effort, but the reward for you – and others – is huge.
If you love meeting people, Liverpool’s stunning Palm House could be the one for you. You can help by greeting visitors and providing information about the Grade II Listed Victorian glass house at its Trust events, give guided tours to adult and school parties, help collate Friends Packs and large mail outs, and raise awareness of the Palm House through your contacts and groups.
You don’t need expert knowledge, just a keen interest in people and wildlife, a flexible approach and, says WWT, a ‘can-do’ attitude. In many cases, volunteers are the public face of WWT, welcoming visitors, ensuring they have a good time, and helping them to understand what WWT does. If you don’t fancy being in the public eye you can work behind the scenes compiling image libraries, helping with research and conservation, working in media and education, or helping to maintain the grounds and reserves.
Whether you’re looking to get out in the great outdoors, work with the public or get an insight into one of its properties, Speke Hall is one of the National Trust places on Merseyside where you can offer your time and support. The NT will give you training and roles range from room guides and costumed interpreters to conservation assistants and storytellers. You can help preserve our heritage, meet new friends – and it’ll look great on a CV!
FoodCycle Liverpool is one of 41 projects around the country which takes surplus food from supermarkets and local independent retailers which would otherwise go to waste and, in Ready, Steady, Cook style, helps turn it into tasty and nutritious three-course meals served to anyone in need of food – and company. The Liverpool group normally meets every Wednesday evening, running out of Cleo’s café at St Cleopas Church on the corner of Mill Street Beresford Road, in Dingle, Toxteth.
To get involved, visit www.foodcycle.org.uk
A Liverpool charity, it supports local rough sleepers and homeless people by offering food, hot drinks, clothes and, more importantly, support and advice. The group, founded in 2015, signposts people towards the right services and support and helpers go out every day of every week, all year round. It isn’t currently looking for volunteers but that can change so, if you think this might be for you, you can still register online, with details of who you are and any relevant experience you might be able to offer.
If you love animals, the PDSA might be where you can lend a hand. They say volunteers are a great help to the charity, and are welcomed in its charity shops, its pet hospitals (there’s one in Kirkdale and one in Huyton) and its offices. They say if you’re looking to learn a new skill, enhance your CV or you just want to help , they’ll have a volunteering opportunity for you. Like so many other charities they rely on volunteers and say ‘every spare hour you can spare makes a huge difference to us’.
The charity relies on around 200 volunteers to support its work improving the lives of older people in the area and there are lots of ways you can make a difference, such as befriending people or offering meet and greet services at a host of its centres of groups. If you’re an IT whizz, why not offer your services as an outreach computer volunteer or, if you’re into keep fit, you could help with exercise classes or put people through their paces on a walk and promote healthier lifestyles. You get the chance to make a difference in someone’s life and be part of the community, and gain a sense of pride and achievement. Everybody wins.
Improving the lives of people with life-limiting illnesses, hospices help them to be as active and independent as possible, and offer support that extends to patients’ carers, families and close friends. They can make what can be a difficult and stressful time so much better – and you can help them to do that. How about welcoming patients in reception, or even sorting the post? You can be a ward helper, serving biscuits, or you can assist in one of the shops or fundraise – even if that just means shaking a bucket. Woodlands would welcome your help – and there are other hospices to which you can give your time like Zoe’s Place, Claire House, Marie Curie and Willowbrook to name but a few.
Every day the Ambulance Service’s non-emergency Patient Transport Service assists hundreds of people to attend appointments and is supported by a dedicated team of volunteer car drivers – so if you enjoy driving this is definitely up your street. You’ll offer a friendly face and a listening ear by putting patients at ease during what can be an anxious and stressful time, and provide that personal touch to brighten their day as you collect them from their home, help get them to where they need to be at the hospital and get them safely back home.
We can all face problems and when it’s difficult and stressful trying to work them out alone, the Citizens Advice Bureau can help. Trained volunteers are invaluable to delivering CAB’s service, helping people find a way forward and campaigning for changes to unfair policies and practices. There many ways to get involved, from admin, fundraising, and trusteeship, to helping clients find the information and advice they need. Volunteers give confidential advice online, over the phone, and in person and, even, support witnesses in court.
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